The book is a classic and the reading is truly inspiring. Simon Vance truly has a gift. But maybe Audible should let customers into a little secret: Simon Vance IS Robert Whitfield; and Richard Matthews and John Richmond. He has used different names for the different publishing houses he has worked. Whitfield was his chosen name while working for Blackstones. So, it's funny to see him competing with himself among the reviews. They are all very good versions.
There are a few of audiobooks where the narration truly improves the story (Shutter Island is one). Since we're talking Dickens, and one of his greatest works, improvement may not be in the cards. But Vance matches the material. Tolstoy cited Chapter 51 of DC; to my mind it (and the rest of the book) ably represent what makes us human, at our best and worst.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and this reading and was sad when it was over. I like Dickens but reading his novels (or even listening to them being read) can sometimes be a chore. Not so here. Vance's reading of the first-person narrative--an adult David recounting his youth--strikes just the right note. His performance of all the many characters and their various dialects is superb.
Okay, I'll be the Black Sheep and say I disagree with all the ravings about how this is Dickens at his best (all of you can start flinging mud at me now). My chief complaint is that I felt that I had met every one of these characters in a different Dickens book and that the
I agree with Joan, this is an awesome book. It was a huge surprise to me that I liked it. This was unexpected pleasure. I only tried after reading after seeing so many good reviews. This is a true classic – stands the test of time.